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Annual Report 2023

Annual Report 2023

Overview

Administration

2023 Zone 7
At-A-Glance

2,360

acre-feet of “extra” water secured for direct delivery and recharge

3,300

acre-feet delivered directly to support agriculture industry

5,200

acre-feet used locally from Lake Del Valle reservoir

10,367

acre-feet of water pumped from our groundwater wells

21,100

acre-feet of water treated at two surface water treatment plants

22,700

acre-feet of water imported through the Delta

30,913

acre-feet of water delivered to retailers to support homes and business

231,000

acre-feet of total groundwater storage maintained

Sarah Palmer

President

2022-2023 Fiscal Year
Zone 7 Water Agency Board of Directors

Message from the President

Dear residents of Tri-Valley community,

Welcome to Zone 7 Water Agency’s 2022-2023 Annual Report! This report covers the fiscal year from July 1, 2022, to June 30, 2023, and highlights our key accomplishments, challenges, and ongoing efforts to provide exceptional water quality, reliability, and flood protection services. This year presented both extremes – from droughts to floods – testing our agency and community. Yet, we’ve met these challenges with the same spirit and resilience that have come to define the Tri-Valley community. 

The second half of 2022 brought continued severe drought conditions, with record low rainfall and intense dry periods impacting our surface water supply across the state. This means the water we normally import from the State Water Project was not available, and our community helped make up the difference by rallying together and meeting our overall 15% conservation goal. We know reducing water usage year over year in these extended drought periods is not easy, and we appreciate our community’s joint commitment to conservation. We share more about the drought and conservation efforts in our Water Reliability section.

The first three months of 2023 abruptly swung to the end of the spectrum showcasing the unpredictability in our weather patterns due to climate change. The “Storm Apocalypse” brought multiple atmospheric river storms to Northern California with extreme weather events and prolonged periods of significant rainfall that quickly saturated our drought-parched soils.

Zone 7 worked collaboratively with county, city, and other partners to respond to flooding, working together to keep our community safe and the flood channels operating as they are intended. This emergency response begins well in advance with year-round preparedness work, and we are proud of our team’s ability to provide immediate response when needed, then to follow-up by applying for emergency grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) within allowable timeframes to ensure we are leverage available resources and managing our local budget responsibly. Please find more information about the emergency response in our Flood Protection section.

This shift in weather also required careful planning and calculated water supply usage. In the first half of the fiscal year, where imported water supplies that we typically rely on were not available, we took 53% of our water from our stored local groundwater basin. Having this local groundwater “savings account” is critical for getting our community through times of water shortage like the recent drought. As new water supplies became available with the storms, our team quickly transitioned to using surface water and just 7% of our water was from our groundwater in the second half of the year. Our priority quickly shifted to using excess water to recharge the groundwater basin to prepare for the next drought, carefully managing our groundwater basin as a viable water supply for when we need it most, as outlined in the Water Reliability section.

Another important step in protecting our groundwater supply this year was making progress on our Stoneridge Well PFAS Treatment System Project. This important project added ion exchange (IX) treatment to our groundwater pump station in Pleasanton to remove Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) found in the local groundwater at the Stoneridge Well. We invite you to watch an animated video on how this new treatment works and see the installation happen in our Water Quality section.

As we continue to deal with an unpredictable climate, we recognize that having more resiliency in our water supply system is more crucial than ever in planning for future generations of the Tri-Valley community. We have worked with our regional partners to make progress on major Water Reliability efforts including:

  • The Delta Conveyance Project would provide an alternative water conveyance route and improve the reliability of State Water Project supplies – our primary source of water supply. The project has released draft environmental impact reports and statements for public review and is developing a community benefits program.
  • Los Vaqueros Reservoir Expansion Project would increase the reservoir’s storage capacity and construct a new pipeline that connects to the South Bay Aqueduct. The project has secured funding and is expected to begin construction in 2025. 
  • Sites Reservoir Project has made significant progress, with a water rights application, a WIFIA loan application, and a Final Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement all submitted. Construction is expected to begin in 2025, and the project could provide up to 1.5 million acre-feet of new storage capacity for California.

In addition to our primary service delivery areas, a network of administrative team members support the work of Zone 7 with diligent financial accounting and budget management, human resources, a robust education program, and proactive communications and community engagement. From annual reports to annual events, lessons to libraries, org charts to expense charts – our commitment to transparency provides you with all the information you need to stay current on the activities of the agency in our Administration section.

Despite the year of extreme challenges, Zone 7 staff remained steadfast in their dedication, ensuring the seamless delivery of clean, safe water while diligently managing our extensive network of flood channels. The Board of Directors extends its deepest gratitude to the entire Zone 7 team, along with our retail partners, for their unwavering commitment to serving the Tri-Valley community.

Sarah Palmer

Sarah Palmer

President

2022-2023 Fiscal Year
Zone 7 Water Agency Board of Directors

Zone 7 Water Agency – Annual Report 2023

Zone 7 Water Agency – Annual Report 2023